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To Fearlessness & Innovation: Cheers to the CIO 100 Tech Leaders!

CIO Magazine’s 2018 celebration of innovative thinking and highly impactful technology execution was held in Southern California. It was an impressive group of CIOs and leaders in technology, business, and academia that gathered at the beautiful Terranea Resort in Rancho Palos Verdes for the annual CIO 100 Symposium. The three-day program of keynotes, panel discussions and workshops also included a celebration dinner for the CIO 100 Honorees during which they received their awards. The companies being honored in 2018 could not be more diverse; they come from many different industries, but they have one major characteristic in common: IT excellence.

A Big, Bold Leap Into the Future

During my time at Workspot I’ve become acquainted or re-acquainted with many CIOs. These IT leaders are evolving into fearless innovators, which is a critical hallmark of the modern CIO. In the fiercely competitive world in which we live, there’s no room for old-school thinking or inertia. What I have observed, and what I imagine the CIO 100 judges discovered in the honorees, is a bias for relentless innovation, a habit of questioning everything, and a desire to simplify IT while creating great user experiences that drive productivity and increase employee satisfaction.

Southland’s Israel Sumano accepts the CIO 100 Award

I know Southland Industries’ Senior Director Infrastructure Services, Israel Sumano, well. Israel, seen here accepting the award honoring his organization’s IT achievements, encapsulates the qualities of modern IT leaders. Israel was instrumental in leading his organization down a path that significantly contributed to the company’s digital transformation: Virtual GPU workstations in the cloud. If you’re familiar with traditional Virtual Desktop Infrastructure (VDI), you can only imagine the level of fearlessness that Israel needed to muster to make that bold leap! After all, CAD and BIM professionals are the most demanding end users on the planet. Working on complex, 3D designs for major infrastructure projects, including stadiums, hospitals, resorts, education institutions, and government buildings requires technology that performs flawlessly so designers can collaborate effectively with team members and clients. What many IT leaders may not realize is that whereas these valuable employees and contractors used to be tethered to their physical workstations to ensure great performance, now they can have it all – anywhere, anytime creativity and productivity, and performance that is often even better than a physical workstation. Beyond the workstyle and amazing performance benefits, cloud workstations deliver business agility that is more than just words or wishful thinking; they provide the opportunity for the business to easily pursue projects anywhere in the world and to better serve clients. That’s what you get with a cloud-native virtual desktop solution.

Perseverance Pays Off

Despite having evaluated other virtual desktop solutions and found them to be too complex, expensive and poor performing, Israel had a conviction that the cloud was the way to go to prepare the business for significant growth. So he persevered, found a solution that met Southland’s requirements, conducted all the appropriate user testing, and then moved ahead with the implementation. That kind of vision, perseverance, and execution is why Israel and the Southland Industries IT team is being honored with the 2018 CIO 100 Award. Here’s to the fearless innovators!